We hear a lot about home this time of year. The term “home for the holidays” is on greeting cards, Hallmark specials, and advertisements. We’re told to decorate our “homes” with glitter and sparkle, as if trying to recapture that magic time when we were children and had fewer cares and hearts full of hope. There’s an old World War II song called “I’ll Be Home for Christmas” and of course, the final line in the refrain is “if only in my dreams.”
A few weeks ago I talked about home being more than a place where you eat and sleep. For me it’s a comfort zone, whether it’s a house, a boat, a car, a tent or just a place where you go to be yourself. But “home” doesn’t have the same meaning for everyone.
In A Touch of Chardonnay, Christopher Brandt, my hero, is searching for home. For him it’s not shelter. It’s a state of mind, a concept that includes a family that he’s never had. He finds it in a very unusual place.
While researching the concept of home, I found many quotes to use at the beginning of each chapter. Home, it seems, is a popular topic. Two became my favorites.
The first one, which is unattributed, fits Christopher’s situation. “It takes hands to build a house, but only hearts can build a home.”
The second one, by Maya Angelou, is more like my idea. “The ache for home lives in all of us, the safe place where we can go as we are and not be questioned.”
Home can be a house full of treasured objects, eager children looking forward to Christmas, or four-legged companions that wake you up with a paw in the face. Whatever your idea of home is, the holidays always bring it front and center in your thoughts.
Enjoy being “home” this holiday season, wherever or whatever it is.